Wet Weather blues – mopping up after the rain

With most residents in Gauteng reeling from a week of constant rain, traffic delays, potholes and stage 4 load shedding, home owners are reminded they should also not forget the negative impact the wet weather can have on their residential security systems.

“This is really important now before families leave for a well-earned holiday to the coast. If anything has become damaged, you certainly don’t want to only become aware of the damage when a real emergency occurs or when you are on holiday,” said Fidelity ADT’s national marketing and communications manager, Charnel Hattingh.

Here are the top four things to check:

  • Perimeter security compromised: Wet weather and wind can impact trees and foliage which can cause damage to your electric fence and cause your outdoor beams and passives to trigger false alarms. Check your perimeter carefully and cut away any branches that could fall on your fence or cross the path of your beams and passives.


  • Electric gates not working: Electric gate motors can become water logged or gate tracks compromised by mud. “Most gate motors are ‘manufacture sealed’ and have a base plate so the bigger problem is the congested track. Our technical teams encourage homeowners to regularly check the tracks for stones and mud and sweep the track to keep it clean. This will prevent the gate from getting stuck or only opening half way.”


  • Key holder access: Key holder access does not only mean allowing access to your perimeter by your private security company but an actual key holder that can access your home in case of flooding, a geyser bursting, roof damage etc. “Many of our customers have family members as key holders. This is great provided they are not away with you on holiday. Many companies allow you to update your key holder details during holiday periods to allow for an alternate contact. This could be the difference between sorting out a problem quickly or having to fly home from your holiday.”


  • Faulty alarms from windows left open. Many residents like to leave one or two windows open when they leave or are away from their homes to let in fresh area or allow cats to get out. This can cause passive infrared sensors to trigger. “These sensors monitor ambient temperature so any change in temperature from a cold breeze or even a fire place can trigger a false alarm.”

“It is often not the emergency itself that causes the most damage but rather the absence of any real plan to deal with it,” says Hattingh.

Her advice is for home owners to do a thorough check of any potential risks and to ensure adequate measures are in place to deal with these emergencies, as far as is reasonably possible. “Also ensure you have thoroughly checked your alarm with your security company before you leave on holiday. This includes all internal and external beams and passives.”